December 11, 2020 – 2nd Week in Advent

“Seeking the Grace of God to to be humble, docile and childlike in the Presence of God and being willing to swim across in the vast ocean of God’s Will!

(Based on Is 48:17-19 and Mt 11:16-19 – Friday of the 2nd Week in Advent, Year B)

A Christian youngster was interacting once with a person who had expertise in catching exotic fish for aquariums.

The man explained: “One of the most popular aquarium fish is the shark.

If you catch a small shark and confine it inside an aquarium tank, it’s size will stay proportionate to the aquarium.
These sharks maybe fully mature, and yet they will remain around six inches.

But if you turn them loose in the ocean, they grow to their normal length of eight feet!”

Hearing this, the Christian boy thought to himself: “So true is this of many Christians!

There are so many little Christians who confine themselves to small and petty thoughts…
… and remain content to swim in a little puddle.
But there are so few who are willing to swim across larger arenas of God’s Providence and Will
… only these enjoy the freedom of docility and peace and trust!”

What kind of Christians are we?

Confined to small, petty thoughts of our ego, selfishness and childishness?
Or willing to swim across in the vast ocean of God’s Will, in humility and openness

The Gospel of the Day is an exposition of a group of people who remained stubbornly stuck to their own immature childish ways!

Our Blessed Lord says: “To what shall I compare this generation? It is like children…” (Mt 11:16)

Two persons who had committed themselves totally to the cause of the Kingdom are under the scanner today – John the Baptist and Jesus.

John the Baptist lived in the wilderness and in preparation for the arrival of the Messiah.
John did not drink wine, and he and his followers fasted regularly. He baptized people in the Jordan River.

But John also preached repentance and gave a clarion call to turn away from one sins!

And this irked the people…

The elders of the Jewish community dreaded him because he recognized the corruption of the priests, and publicly called them to repent and be baptized.

They refused, because they wanted to keep their power, their wealth, their full stomachs and their fine clothing!

Jesus went around the cities and towns healing the sick and curing the lepers and doing many mighty works.
Jesus shared in the table-fellowship of many people regularly. Jesus preached the Kingdom of God.

But Jesus also challenged people to let go off their sinful and corrupt lives and turn to God in penitence!

And this annoyed the leaders…

The Pharisees hated him because he preached with much authority and his new understanding of the law was highly challenging!

They rejected Him, because they wanted to stick to their traditions, empty hearts and their inhuman practices!

Jesus and John both would have hit high on the popularity charts if they had “lightened up” or “played nice” or “would have allowed things to be little more easy”!

But both of Them did not budge…

This is what Jesus says:
“We played the flute for you, you did not dance;
We mourned to you, you did not weep.” (Mt 11: 17)

This reaction by the people to Them was a song of derision… a tune of mockery…a melody of ridicule!

John the Baptist and Jesus, both, failed to let this Spiritual Childishness to overpower Them and to give in to silly demands!

Prophet Isaiah reminds us of the loss, if we fail to be open to the commands and Will of the Lord:
“O that you had paid attention to my commandments! Then your prosperity would have been like a river, and your success like the waves of the sea!” (Isa 48:18)

We all can fall victims to this tendency to be confined to small, petty thoughts of our ego, selfishness and childishness!

Sharks, if confined to a small area, remain small and insignificant

But if let loose in the ocean, they grow to a massive size of eight feet!

Let us seek the grace of God to make efforts to be humble, docile and childlike in the Presence of God

With gaiety and enthusiasm, let us be willing to swim across in the vast ocean of God’s Will!

God Bless! Live Jesus!

Quotable-quote-a-day-with-St Francis de Sales (SFS) – We all colour devotion according to our own likings and dispositions.

One man sets great value on fasting, and believes himself to be leading a very devout life, so long as he fasts rigorously…
… al though the while his heart is full of bitterness.

And while he will not moisten his lips with wine, perhaps not even with water, in his great abstinence…

… he does not scruple to steep them in his neighbour’s blood, through slander and detraction!”

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